Read of the Week

Adventures of Anna Atom

Elizabeth Wasserman


Review: Lauren O’Connor-May

As a proud nerd, I frequently read sci-fi novels, especially those aimed at the young adult market. Good sci-fi is not always easy to find, especially since the genre has become so popular in recent years. The boom has seen a big increase in sci-fi writers but not all of them are worth second glances.

I was therefore super stoked to discover a new author, for YA sci-fi at least, and one who was local as well. Double bonus! But would it be any good? Thankfully, it is.

Elizabeth Wasserman has written several books, but the Adventures of Anna Atom was her first foray into young adult, sci-fi.

Ms Wasserman has a science background and has written a non-fiction science book and another sci-fi series for younger readers.

Sticking with a formula that works, the book is high on action-adventure, with bits of romance, lots of twists and betrayals and of course, there is the villain – a mad scientist who hates all humanity but himself.

The story is entertaining, although everything about it has the feel of something that has been done before and the environmental theme is pushed very strongly.

The story takes place on a global, even interstellar, scale but the characters are placeless in that their nationalities are not clearly defined. This is somewhat disappointing because I hoped that, being a local author, there would have been a bit more South African flavour.

Nevertheless, Anna Atom is worth meeting and I think young people will enjoy this book.